29.06.2011 - 03.07.2011 29 °C
MILAN is Italy’s business capital, urban, and grey (literally since it was drizzling when we got there and everything seemed grey to me). For short trips to Italy, I’d recommend that people skip Milan since it doesn’t fulfill the usual cravings for “quintessential Italy”. Even the inside of Duomo is not as impressive as the other churches in Rome. Hotels and food are also more expensive in Milan.
We arrived at Milan from France via Trenitalia
Anyhoo, first mandatory photo is at the white marbled Duomo which is smacked at the center of Milan.
There are lots of pigeons at the piazza in front of Duomo. Be careful as locals will forcefully put bird seeds on your hands, or sprinkle some at your shoulders so the birds will flock to you. Then they will demand payment from you! A local demanded 10euros from us!
The most exciting part of our Milan Trip is that we got to see Leonardo da Vinci’s actual mural of “The Last Supper” at the Monastery of Santa Maria dela Grazzie, a UNESCO World Heritage!!
Below is the picture of the monastery’s red bricks, so its easy fairly easy to locate it.
We got inside, and was wowed by the collection of paintings which were hanging on the wall.
Ceilings and walls are also intricately designed
After our visit to the monastery, we proceeded to the next building where The Last Supper mural is located.
Now, since we haven’t done any research ahead of this trip, we were thinking we could easily get tickets off the counter. We were SO WRONG. Tickets are sold out MONTHS in advance, given that only a limited number of people may view it. Apparently, access to the refectory is strictly limited to a few people per day (to preserve the painting, they need to regulate the temperature, oxidation, etc). And so we lost all hope of going inside. However, the lady at the counter called to my dad and told him that three (3) people cancelled their reservations and that she could sell the tickets to us! GRAZIE MILLE!! God bless her and those 3 who cancelled! We immediately paid and grabbed the tickets!
No more than 25 people are allowed at a time, and visits are limited to approximately 15 minutes only. The refectory is a sealed, temperature controlled room. From the lobby, a glass door will open to let the group inside a sort-of holding area – this is actually the humidity controlling chamber. We went through several doors like this, before we got to the actual refectory itself. When we saw the painting on the wall, there was a collective gasp. The painting was super huge and covers the end wall of the dining hall of the monastery! Unfortunately, taking photo is strictly prohibited, but I managed to get this photo at their website:
We also went to Castello Sforzesco, which used to be the home of Sforzas (Duke of Milan) and later the Austrian governor. As there are nothing much to do here, we just sat on the grass and soak up the sun
Of course, being the fashion capital, my Mom and I did not miss the opportunity to shop! But lunch first at one of the restaurants in Galeria Vittorio Emanuele. Ceiling is gorgeous!
Some of our other pictures all over milan:
At the train station of milan
Hope you enjoyed my photos! Ciao!!